Happy Birthday Eva Green! Scenes from some of my favorite roles of hers.

BdayEva

I LOVE Eva Green! Though her filmography isn’t very extensive, the Parisian-born actress certainly left quite an impression to me ever since I saw her in Kingdom of Heaven. Like most of the actors I tend to obsess over, I love actresses who have a gorgeous voice to go with their beautiful faces. Eva’s got a voice and British/French accent that I can listen to for days on end, just like my other faves Cate Blanchett, Carey Mulligan and Rebecca Ferguson.

I’d watch to her interviews just to listen to her talk, whether in English or French … it’s quite mesmerizing. Here’s one talking about her recent role in SHOWTIME’s Penny Dreadful. I’ve only seen a few episodes of this (too scary for me) but I was really impressed by her performance as Vanessa Ives:

A quick bio thanks to IMDb:

Eva Gaëlle Green was born on July 6, 1980, in Paris, France. She has a sororal twin sister. Her father, Walter Green, is a dentist who appeared in the 1966 film Au Hasard Balthazar (1966). Her mother, Marlène Jobert, is an actress turned children’s book writer.

She studied acting at Saint Paul Drama School in Paris for three years, then had a 10-week polishing course at the Weber Douglas Academy of dramatic Art in London. She returned to Paris as an accomplished young actress, and played on stage in several theater productions: La Jalousie en Trois Fax and Turcaret.

There, she caught the eye of director Bernardo Bertolucci. Green followed a recommendation to work on her English. She studied for two months with an English coach before doing The Dreamers (2003) with Bernardo Bertolucci.

I have to admit I haven’t seen Bertolucci’s The Dreamers yet, in which the Italian direction dubbed her ‘so beautiful it’s indecent,’ but I have no doubt she made an impression. She has no qualms about taking her clothes off, but it’d take more than just a hot body to be successful in this business. I think she can be as ravishing fully clothed, as you can witness in the scene where Vesper first met Bond on the train to Montenegro.

Here are some clips and images from some of my favorite Eva Green roles:

Kingdom of Heaven (2005)

Eva_Sibylla

I’m not a fan of this film initially because of Orlando Bloom’s miscasting, but I definitely remember Green’s Sibylla. Her green eyes are so mesmerizingly piercing through her veil, it’s hard to take your eyes off her whenever she’s on screen.

 

Franklyn (2008)


This is an obscure movie most of you likely haven’t heard of, let alone seen. But thanks to my crushing on Sam Riley, I actually bought the movie partly because I also love Eva. She actually has the biggest role in the film, even more prominent than Ryan Phillipe who’s supposedly the lead. That’s a good thing in my book, though of course I wish Sam has more screen time. I love that Eva can do crazy and still manages to make ’em look sexy. And I do love the few scenes between Eva’s Emilia and Sam’s Milo, I wish they’d work together again one day!

Casino Royale (2006)


I think most of you already know that Green’s Vesper Lynd is my all time favorite Bond girl. I’ve watched all of the Bond movies from Dr No to Spectre and yep, she’s still the reigning champ… a Bond girl who’s very much 007’s equal who’s no damsel in distress. She may’ve betrayed Bond in the end but she also saved him. She’s a multi-layered character, not just a shag subject with a body to kill for, and Green’s as smart as she is incredibly sexy. I’ve posted the scene on the train in this post, I’m including a couple others I love from CR:

Sin City: A Dame To Kill For (2014)

SinCity2_Eva

She shines even in a not-so-good movies like Sin City 2. In fact, she’s the only one worth watching in this movie. I’d say it’s perfect casting as I totally believe her as a dame worth killing for!

 


Hope you enjoy my tribute to miss Green. What’s YOUR fave Eva Green role(s)?

Monthly Roundup & Favorite Movie of AUGUST 2014

Aug2014Recap

I can’t believe we’ve reached the ‘ber’ month already which soon will turn to ‘brrrrr’ months 😦 It’s really quite depressing to see fashion magazines AND stores are now full of sweaters and coats once again. I’m holding off on buying ANYTHING with long sleeves until at least end of September! [yes I’m in denial Summer is basically over].

Ok, on to the monthly recap!

It’s a rather slow month for press screenings as some of them were held in the morning or I’m simply not interested enough in seeing them. But I think the next few months will hopefully be a lot busier. August is definitely a sad month for film fans & beyond. We lost the great Robin Williams, Lauren Bacall and Sir Richard Attenborough 😦

Posts you might’ve missed:

Blog Relay & Blogathons:

That last blogathon was a lot of fun to work on all weekend and I REALLY took my time writing and finding photos of Toby Stephens 😉 Speaking of the handsome devil, I started August by finally catching up with Noël Coward’s Private Lives starring well, you know, which I enjoyed tremendously!

PrivateLives2013

New-to-me Movies:

Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)

Sin City: A Dame to Kill For (2014)

Into The Storm (2014)

Zodiac (2007)

Aug Blindspot: The Philadelphia Story (1940)

Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014)
AmazingSpiderman2

There’s nothing amazing about this one, in fact I’m glad I never bothered seeing it on the big screen. I didn’t care for the Peter-Gwen romance and the villains are laughably bad. Dane Dehaan was okay before he turned into Green Goblin, blech (2 out 5)

Enemy (2014)
Enemy2013
I expected this one to be a weird film and it certainly was. It’s not as disturbing as I thought but it’s definitely a strange film, though the story itself isn’t that groundbreaking. People with arachnophobia should steer clear of this movie though. Jake Gyllenhaal is good playing a dual role, but the pace is far too tedious for my liking. (3.5 out of 5)

Gambit (2012)
Gambit2012
Ok so I’ve been warned by the terrible 18% rating on Rotten Tomatoes but I figure a movie starring Colin Firth and Alan Rickman (one of my fave actors ever) in a script written by the Coen Brothers can’t be THAT bad. Alas, despite some comic moments (mostly from Firth in a slapstick mode), there’s very little to recommend this one. Plus Cameron Diaz is as annoying as ever here. (2 out of 5)

The French Minister (2013)
FrenchMinister2013
We’re in the mood for a comedy Sunday night and the trailer for this one piqued our interest. It’s similar to In the Loop but set in France instead of England, with a heck of a lot less swearing. I think it was pretty hilarious and the main actor who plays the Minister’s speech writer, Raphaël Personnaz, reminds me a bit of Jason Bateman with his constantly baffled expression. Highly recommended if you’re in the mood for a zany foreign comedy. (4 out of 5)

Rewatches:

Favorite Movie Seen in August 2014:

This is an easy pick for this month. Though I’m not in love with this movie as most people are, I still think it’s a fun & enjoyable comic-book flick with an absolutely awesome soundtrack. I definitely will rent this later when it’s out on Bluray!

GuardiansGalaxy


So, what movies did you get to see in August and which one is your favorite?

Weekend Roundup – ‘Sin City: A Dame To Kill For’ review

Happy Monday everyone! It’s a sweltering HOT Summer weekend and those who know me well know I’m not a big fan of heat and humidity so I actually spend a lot of time indoors and got to see quite a lot of new movies as well as rewatches.

WeekendViewingRoundupAug24

You could say it’s a pretty eclectic weekend viewing given the variety of movies we saw the past four days. On Friday night we ended up watching The Amazing Spider-man 2 [which wasn’t at all amazing], the psycho thriller ENEMY with Jake Gyllenhaal [as weird as I had expected], and The Philadelphia Story for this month’s Blind Spot. I also rewatched my old fave The Phantom of the Opera, yep the movie that made me fall hard for Gerry Butler oh so many years ago.

I didn’t go to the cinema this weekend, but boy seems that lots of people went to see The Guardians of the Galaxy again as it’s now back on top with $17 mil, beating all the new releases, including Sin City: A Dame to Kill For which bombed big time with only $6 mil, ouch! Well, having seen it, I really think this sequel is utterly unnecessary and after nine years, it seems much too late for a follow-up. Here’s my review:

SinCity2Bnr

I was curious to see this one mainly because of the striking visuals, which was pretty much all I could remember from the first film. That, and how cool, sexy and mysterious Clive Owen was and the stylized brutal violence, especially the bits involving Elijah Wood in a role as far away as Frodo as it could get. This time Frank Miller is back in the directing chair with Robert Rodriguez.

This time, we’ve got Josh Brolin as Owen’s replacement in the role of Dwight, a pity as Brolin doesn’t come close in terms of cool factor as the brooding, hunky British actor. Well, the same could be said about the movie as a whole. The novelty factor of the color palette of black & white with a touch of red is wearing thin, plus the plot is even thinner this time around, chock full of clichéd dialog that ultimately renders the whole thing pointless.

The tagline refers to the main character in one of the four entwined story lines, and admittedly, it’s the more intriguing one simply because of Eva Green. Oh how I’d have loved to have seen her on screen with Clive Owen, she’s my favorite Bond girl and Owen’s an actor who’d make an awesome 007. In any case, Green plays a femme fatale type role in which she played as effortlessly as she ditched her clothes in the film. Being French she’s clearly comfortable with nudity. The stylish lighting and camera angle captured her allure beautifully as she devoured every scene she’s in with aplomb.

SinCity2_Stills

The rest of the story lines are pretty boring by comparison, my least favorite is the one involving Joseph Gordon-Levitt as he seems miscast in the role, especially against Powers Booth who fits the noir genre perfectly. He’s quite sinister here with his deep, gravely voice, but his character is as one-dimensional as the rest. The father/son story is nowhere near as clever or intriguing as it wants to be. Jessica Alba reprises her role as Nancy and with all of her gyrating body as a stripper, she is just so lightweight that she comes across so ho-hum next to Eva Green. Mickey Rourke’s back again as Marv, perhaps the film’s comic relief, even in the most violent parts of the movie.

The movie is only 1 hr 42 min long but it started to drag pretty quickly. The stylized violence and all that nudity + sex scenes felt more like a gimmick that became more ho-hum as the movie progressed. As I came out of the theater I thought, it took them 9 years to come up with THIS? [shakes head] Despite the beautiful 3D, the film falls exasperatingly flat. Proof that visual flair alone doesn’t make a movie.

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So that’s what I saw this weekend folks, what about you? Seen anything good?

Question of the Week: What’s your favorite contemporary black & white films?

This week’s question is inspired by Sin City: A Dame to Kill For screening Tuesday night. Boy it’s been ages, almost a decade to be exact, since the first film was released.

SinCityDameToKillFor

To be honest with you, I don’t remember much about the story but the visual certainly is striking. The graphic novel came to live onto the screen, the term ‘graphic’ here has double meaning as the violence truly was quite explicit. Yet the stylish way it was filmed somehow made it somewhat more palatable if you will, enhancing that fantasy element to the noir story. So I kind of expect more of a visual feast with this sequel and not much else, but who knows it might surprise me.

So it got me thinking about other contemporary black/white films released in the past decade. Naturally the first thing that came to mind is Schindler’s List, but that was over twenty years ago. If we’re looking at just in 2000s decade alone, there are nearly 250 films in either partial or entirely done in black & white (per Wiki). Here are a some of beautifully-shot B&W films I’ve seen just in the past 10 years:

Memento
Memento (2001)
AngelA
Angel-A (2005)
SinCity
Sin City (2005)
TheArtist
The Artist (2005)
CaesarMustDie
Caesar Must Die (2012)
Nebraska
Nebraska (2013)

There are some recently-released ones I still want to see like Control, Persepolis, Blancanieves, Much Ado About Nothing, Frances Ha, Ida, etc. Hopefully I’ll get to those soon.


So what’s YOUR favorite modern Black & White films you saw recently?